I’ve been wanting to take on this project ever since I was elected Chair-Elect for the youth services section of the Nebraska Library Association (NLA). After getting the position, I wanted to learn more about this group so naturally I checked out their online presence, and was very disappointed. It looked like there had been an effort to get a basic blog going, but with it being a volunteer sort of thing, it had been left untouched for over a year.
I began thinking of what I’d hope to find when checking out that blog, and I basically came to the conclusion that I’d want to find a place where Nebraska YS librarians share and help each other. I tried to find another YS blog that was “collective,” or crowdsourced, but failed (if anyone is aware of one, then please let me know!).**
**The lovely Marge Loch-Wouters of Tiny Tips for Library Fun fame pointed out the Youth Services Shout-Out blog. I had looked at it before, and didn’t realize that it was very much crowdsourced with rotating admins (see comment section below).
Unfortunately, my health had to be my priority in life for quite some time. It wasn’t until our Children’s Library had a visit from the University of Omaha’s Special Libraries class that I suddenly had a spark of renewed desire to make the blog a special place for Nebraska librarians (and anyone else who’s looking for awesome ideas, printables, and more). I mean, there’s this magic that happens when you gather a group of librarians together and they share with one another.
I jumped right in and overhauled the site, even designing a new logo (which you see at the top of this post). I even created a twitter account (@SCYP_NLA) to try and really help NE librarians build PLNs with both each other and the rest of the world.
I’ve written two posts so far, and am trying to patiently go through that desert time with any new blog. It took Hafuboti almost three years to start being viewed by more that a few dozen people per month. I’m also on hold for an email blast to SCYP members (the person who does that is on jury duty – d’oh!).
So, I’m now dividing my time between two blogs. I’m super-excited and hope that my vision becomes reality. I’d truly appreciate it if you popped on over and took a look. I’d appreciate it even more if you’d give me feedback: what you like/don’t like, and any ideas you might have for where that blog could go. I’m hoping to get some storytime posts, passive programs, and other event posts (like Free Comic Book Day) up within the next few weeks.
Whether or not the revamped SCYP (pronounced “skip”) blog succeeds or fails, I’ll probably share my thoughts on the process over here. After all, I want people interested to know what will/won’t work – especially if they’re interested in trying to create something similar. I mean, wouldn’t that be cool and super-empowering if every state had a collective youth services blog?
***BIG Update: I attended my first Board Meeting as the SCYP Chair in December 2015, and spoke with the Head of the IT for the NLA. I asked about getting our blog onto the official NLA site and it turns out that I couldn’t just do a simple “redirect” to the WordPress blog that I put so much time and effort into – I needed to build it from scratch using this other platform.
Fortunately, I figured out that I could copy/past pretty much all of the content into new areas, so although it doesn’t look as slick as the WordPress one, I think that it looks good for now. Check it out HERE.